WOUND AND FOUNTAIN
These images explore the evolution of my relationship with my wife Ana through difficult years of spatial separation that raised in both of us questions of timing and fidelity, happiness and sacrifice.
We chose to complete our graduate school degrees at separate schools half a continent apart. The result was three years of hotels and airports, ecstatic reunions and long periods of trying to maintain the thread of our relationship through the computer and the promise of a next visit. Looking back, I see that the camera became a way for me to navigate these years by giving this disorienting experience a narrative and by giving voice to the emotional states of that time.
These photographs – all candid and made between 2007 and 2011 – are specific to our relationship, but I believe that they also reflect a broader shared experience of contemporary life. We are, as a society, more frequently spending time apart from those we love for extended periods in order to pursue our best opportunities for work and education. Those decisions have consequences for every relationship.
The prints are small to match the intimate personal nature of the subject matter and build on the diaristic images made by photographers who have worked with a smaller-format camera in order to weave together projects based in their daily life and personal relationships.
This project ended when I graduated from school and moved to where Ana was completing her doctorate degree. When she finished, we married.
TOM GRIGGS received an MFA from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design in 2009 and a BFA from the same school in 2002. He also earned a BA from Wesleyan University in 1997. He has exhibited his photographs internationally. He received the ICETEX Visiting Professor Grant to Colombia for 2010-2011. Nexus / foundation for today’s art awarded him their Purchase Prize in 2007 and the Massachusetts College of Art and Design gave him a Travel Award for studies in Paris in 2002. His work is included in the Permanent Print and Picture Collection of the Free Library of Philadelphia and private collections.
Tom lives in Medellín, Colombia where he teaches photography at La Universidad de Antioquia. He also runs the website fototazo.